Saturday, October 30, 2010

A long time

A glass of wine,  a bit of time. It has been too long.

The last couple of months have flown by. School has taken a front seat and is practically driving this car I call my life. It has been tough, not only the reading but the retaining and using of information but just getting into a new routine. The younger two seem to be getting in the groove but it has been harder for Max. It is not easy to go from having a mom who is there for every pick up and to make sure your homework gets done to being in school an hour longer with Dad picking you up. I am glad that he talks openly to me about his feelings and that he lets me know that he wants to have time with me. I know that the older he gets the challenge will be to get him to actually want to spend time with me.

Maggie seems to be okay but then she gets to have me on Fridays when she is not in school. So she seems to be adjusting okay to 4 full days of school.

Harry doesn't seem to like his siblings going to school except that he likes to be at school and watch all the kids. He really enjoys dropping them off and hanging out for a few minutes on the playground with them. He is such a happy, smiley little guy. He really is good for me. He will pull me off the couch while I am studying or reading to play with him. Can't really deny him and he gives me much needed breaks and keeps life in perspective.

And really Thank goodness I have such a supportive husband because I really couldn't do this without him literally. He switched his schedule and he cooks dinner most days of the week. I just get to swoop in and give kisses and read books at bedtime when I get home from school.

hmm maybe that glass or two of wine is hitting me in a sappy way. lol

Anyway life is pretty good and I just wanted to share.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

This weekend and THE midterm from heck

This past weekend was AMAZING. It is hard to describe how fantastic it is to be with such a wide variety of women from all over the country and really just have a great time non stop. We had liberals, conservatives, religious, and not so and yet not one argument. There was truly nothing to argue about. It was just about enjoying and discovering a lot about each other.
I was excited to listen and get to know everyone better and was grateful for the opportunities to enjoy their company. I am hoping this becomes an annual event.

At the same time, I was with all these amazing ladies, I needed to study for a midterm I had yesterday evening. It is in my killer make or break class. I believe I did okay. It was definitely a relief just to be done and have it off my shoulders. Now it is on to the next assignment.

I got my test back from my intro class today. Ugh. I have got to get over my confidence. I thought that I had done pretty darn well.  But I walked away with a b. And I know it is not so bad but I still feel disappointed. It has been a tough semester of relearning how to learn.

I need to learn that tv is not my friend.

And tonight I taped my project. I am hoping that I got it all and that I don't need to redo it. And I am hoping that Thursday will provide more satisfaction on the test front.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Great Grandparents

So the whole time I was in the Philippines, I thought about this blog and about what I would write and how I would like to upload pictures. I still hope to at some point and I want to upload video but I am jumping ahead of myself.

Growing up, I had the pleasure of knowing and loving my great grandparents. My great grandmother died when I was young but I still remember her soft hugs and wonderful food. My great grandfather was an interesting character. I believe I was 15 when he passed so I have pretty good memories of him. And some interesting stories. He helped repair the steeple on a church. He built the two houses, one that he lived in and one that my grand parents lived in.

He used to shoot squirrels from the window of his house. Yep, they would get in the bird feed and eat it, chasing the birds away. My great used to get out his handgun and shoot them, that is until the local police came and asked him to stop shooting his gun within city limits. I think at that point, he had shot about 84 squirrels only missing one. Of course, I don't have rose colored glasses. He was bigoted in a big way. He wouldn't have approved of my marriage or kids but then he was born around the turn of the century. I don't subscribe to his world view but I could still love him none the less and learn from him.

My mom's dad was, also, an interesting character. He was a successful business man. He was a good cook. He gave me the gift of the love of travel. He and my grandmother had been all over the world. He had great stories and an independent spirit. I moved from Iowa City to Tucson in 2006. He picked me up while he was on his normal summer travel from Phoenix to the east coast through the midwest and back again to Phoenix. We traveled in his car stopping in New Mexico. At the motel, he brought out his flask so that we could share a sip. He was a drink before dinner kind of guy. He always seemed worldly and welcoming. Every birthday, he would send a letter with a poem that he composed as well as articles and cartoons he had found interesting or funny that he wanted to share.  He was really into the stock market and gold. He was early on gold by about 10 years. He died while I was pregnant with Max.

Krismon's grandfather reminds me of my grandfather. He doesn't speak english, he is shorter than my grandfather was but there is something indescribable. He still works and he is almost 90. I found out that he started working when he was 15. He was adopted. He inspires his family with his hard work. This visit was for him, to celebrate his birthday and to bring all his children together with him. And for me, it was to give my kids time with their great grandfather. The kids loved giving him kisses, Harry liked bumping foreheads with him.

Okay this is the only picture I found this time so far with the older kids and their great grandfather, Tikong (spelling? chinese for great grandfather). The picture includes their uncle joel and Mercy. She bought the cake for him, she's been cooking for the family for over 20 years. She's an awesome cook and super nice woman.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

School glorious school

So instead of reading and reading and reading some more. I am here. I feel like some awful girlfriend who hasn't called in ages.

Harry and I got back over a week ago so that I could start only one week late for school. I wish I could have started on time. I am still playing catch up. School has changed since I went for my undergraduate degree. There were things that the teachers use that would have been helpful to know about ahead of time. They have this online program that is used as a means to communicate and it cuts down on paper usage by the school. I didn't learn about it until my first day of class but I think some of the stuff was already up for a whole. I could have done the readings while I was gone. But I digress. I got to my first class only to find out that there was already a project due a week from that following Wednesday. huh? No way. Yup. And they gave us a mock quiz but didn't tell us til after that that was what it was. Yeah I felt good about my starting grad school. uh huh....

Outside of that first class, the other classes have gone fairly well. Some of the reading is dry but that's going to happen no matter what. What do I enjoy? Speaking with adults! Getting out. Learning, learning and learning some more. I am hoping also that I can show my kids how important studying is and reading. I have a feeling Harry isn't going to get as many kids books read to him as he will counseling books... lol

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Here we are

It is pretty great to surprise an almost 90 yr old man by coming to visit. It was a long flight and a seemingly even longer wait for our luggage but more than worth it to see the happy face of Krismon's grandfather. He said a few times how he just didn't even know that we were coming. The kids greeted him happily. Harry will hopefully warm up to him quickly. Despite our ability to speak easily to each other, you can just feel his happiness.
The kids are in heaven being with all their aunties, uncles and grand aunties and uncles. They are getting to eat candy and pretty much anything else their hearts could desire.
I love getting to catch up with his family as well. There are new babies, new married couples. Friends, we haven't seen in so long. And in a few days, a beach, sandy kids, giggles and snuggles.
Then next week, more surprises when more family arrives from the states and Canada.

Oh and do my kids know how to sweat or what? Picture will have to come later.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sunday= fun day

The kids, their auntie Beverly and I went to see wicked today. It was awesome! And I do not use the word lightly. Max was a little frightened at points but Maggie was enthralled. They both loved that they knew some of the music already. Thank you glee cast radio on pandora! I loved seeing the songs brought to life thru the story. I highly recommend this musical. It suggests 8 and older but my kids did pretty darn well. Maggie was disappointed that she didn't get to meet the cast afterwards.

Then it was off to dinner and now we wait to board our plane...

Thursday, August 12, 2010

SF Zoo

So the month of August is free for kids with good reason, not as many areas are open but we still managed to spend 4 hours wandering around as well as buying and eating lunch. We have decided from now on, we will not be doing this. I think we have spent so much more at these places for their lunches that we could have packed much better lunches with treats for the kids. Live and learn.

So as we drove, we took a different way to get to the zoo. Yes, we drove into a wall of white. Did I mention that I was driving? It has been a long time since I drove in a white out. It was nerve wracking and fun all at the same time. When we got ocean side it was gone, thankfully so we could gaze at the water before getting to the zoo. Our friends pulled in at the same time, talk about perfect timing. The kids enjoyed most of it. We loved the gorillas especially and then the children's zoo specifically. We could put Harry on the ground and let him walk around and touch the African goats. They were so gentle and he got to touch a tortoise and a chicken. It's fun to see his reactions as such a little guy. It was nice to catch up with my friend.

I think in all of this the only part that troubles me is Max's attitude. I feel like he is taking fore granted all these activities that we have gotten to do over the last two weeks.  I guess it is hard to convey to him how lucky he is do so many things that I didn't do as a kid especially in such a short stretch of time.